Fancy a summer filled with moonlit swims, wild camping and seashore foraging? The latest in the best-selling Wild Guide series features more than 1000 hidden places to explore, camp and eat at in southern and eastern England, from Norfolk to the New Forest and the Cotswolds to Kent.
Here, co-author Lucy Grewcock shares four ideas for wild summer weekends.
The Fens and Nene Valley
Wild Swim in the River Nene past reedy banks, open fields and honey-coloured cottages, then clamber ashore at the Kings Head in Wadenhoe village, where the pub garden slopes directly into the water. Refuel with local ale and steak, then spend the night in the decommissioned church at Aldwincle village, where the village farmer will bring your breakfast to the church door.
Bedfordshire and Great Ouse
Rope swing into the river at Pavenham or Felmersham then head to The Bell in Odell, where the garden of this thatched village pub backs onto the Ouse. Spend an afternoon following the ancient Roman Road through King’s Wood or listening for woodpeckers in Swineshead Wood, then watch the sun set over the Bedford Plains from the ruins of Houghton House before falling asleep in a safari tent on New Barn Farm, while badgers rustle and owls hoot.
From the simple riverside campsite at Rushbank Farm, hire a canoe and paddle along the River Stour to the Anchor pub, when you can savour a home-smoked lunch or buy takeaway fish and chips. Nearby, visit the earthworks of Lindsay Castle, or explore the lush woodland and meadow at Arger Fen before returning to the campsite for a moonlit swim.
Isle of Wight
Discover the island’s most remote beach and scramble across the rocks for a dip in the sea before feasting on local crab at the Buddle Smuggler’s Inn. As the sun sets, stroll along the cliff tops to the medieval lighthouse of St Catherine’s Oratory then retreat to Bank End Farm for secluded camping with sea views.
The Wild Guide (£15.99, Wild Things Publishing) features over 1000 wild places to explore, eat and stay in southern and eastern England. Available to buy in bookshops and online.